Increasing the Discoverability of Digital Collections Using Wikipedia: The Pitt Experience


  • Ed Galloway University of Pittsburgh
  • Cassandra DellaCorte University of Pittsburgh



During the Fall 2013 academic semester at the University of Pittsburgh, two undergraduate history majors performed a Wikipedia internship in the University Library System’s Archives Service Center and Special Collections Department. The purpose was to enhance the discoverability of Pitt’s digital collections and finding aids by creating links from Wikipedia articles to relevant content held by the library’s specialized collection units as well as to generally improve the quality of articles by adding additional information. By editing nearly 100 articles in Wikipedia, the interns developed their own effective strategies to perform this work and learned how to use and edit Wikipedia efficiently, how to navigate library resources effectively, how to decide what types of content would be valuable to add, and how to present new and respectable information. As a result, usage of Pitt’s online digitized collections and finding aids appears to have increased.

Author Biographies

Ed Galloway, University of Pittsburgh

Head, Archives Service Center, University Library System, University of Pittsburgh

Cassandra DellaCorte, University of Pittsburgh

Undergraduate History and Communications double major, University of Pittsburgh